Phuket tour bus operators seek government help after a year of unemployment

Tour bus operators on Thailand’s resort island of Phuket are asking for help from the provincial administration after being sued for missing their lease repayments, with some facing bankruptcy, due to a year of unemployment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Phuket Bus Operators 30 Association, representatives of the Phuket Double Deck Tour Bus Operators Club and individuals involved in tour bus services met with Raywat Aree-rob, Head of the Phuket Provincial Administration Organisation, to discuways to alleviate the impact of the pandemic, especially lawsuits from non-bank agencies.

The representatives have also asked the province to help in negotiating with non-bank executives over the payment of installments, to enable them to avoid bankruptcy. They also want the government to focus not only on the hospitality sector, but include other tourism businesses, such as tour buses and boat operators, as well. They said that, in the past year, these groups have never been invited to discuss the problems they face with the government sector, including progress COVID-19 vaccinations.

Raywat said that he has informed the province and, from now, on they will include the bus operators in every meeting. As for their financial issues, Raywat said he has sent a letter on the matter to the Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Thailand.

As for COVID-19 vaccinations, he expects that there will be no problem and over 70% of Phuket’s population will be inoculated in time to meet the schedule for reopening the island to tourism.


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